Thursday, December 12, 2013

The Norah Dress pattern tour + Flutter Sleeve tutorial

I am super excited to be a part of the Norah Dress and Tunic pattern tour today at Welcome to the Mouse House. As some of you may know I really love this pattern! This is the third one I've made. 
I also thought it would be fun to throw in a flutter sleeve tutorial for you :)

I will get to the tutorial momentarily. First, I would like to tell you a little bit about this dress.

 This dress was made with a beautiful, rich plum colored linen blend fabric. It's delicious!

The accent fabric is a pretty satin that I picked up from the remnant bin at Joann's a while back. I added piping to the collar. Then, to tie it all in, I added a strip of the satin and piping to the bottom of the dress.

 I made a size 6 in hopes that it would last through summer, but at the rate this girl is growing I will be lucky if it lasts through spring! That just means I will have to make more Norahs...woot!

This Norah is a sleeveless version with collar and cincher options. And, as you may have noticed, I added a sweet little flutter sleeve to this Norah!

The flutter sleeve works wonderfully with the classic style of the Norah pattern. Let me show you how I made it! Tutorial time; woot, woot!!!

First, I will show you how to draft your own flutter sleeve, then I will show you how I made mine. There are lots of different kinds of flutter sleeves. This one is a flutter cap sleeve with shoulder gathers. So now that we know what we are making, lets get started!

The "proper" way to draft a flutter sleeve is to use the slash and spread method; may also referred to as cut and spread method. So let's start with that.

***Free flutter cap sleeve pattern! Available for download HERE.***

Repeat the same process for your other sleeve. 
That wasn't too bad, eh? It will seem easy after you've done it a couple times, I promise!
Oh, and those with a keen eye may have noticed that I sewed my center back seam before attaching my sleeves. DON'T do this! I t makes it very difficult to turn. I had to rip this seam before I could turn my dress. Haha!

Thank you so much for having me on the tour Hayley! 

You can visit all the other super amazing Norah dresses and tunics on the pattern tour by clicking through the links at Welcome to the Mouse House ;)

Monday, December 9, 2013

The Playhouse Dress

Fishsticks designs has recently released some great new patterns; as always. 
I was one of the lucky, lucky testers for The Playhouse Dress. I have been waiting so long to be able to tell you about this one! Okay, it just feels like forever when it is something that you love. And, oh, how I do love this dress pattern!

Seriously, it is one of my most favorite handmade dresses Keilana has right now. It is easy to see why...

The curved bodice; the puff sleeves; the cotton woven and knit combo that work beautifully together.

(A sun glare washed out the colors on the bottom of the dress in this picture. I promise you, they are very vibrant in real life.)
This dress can be made with all knits, or with the woven and knit combo like I used. The bodice, neck binding, and sleeve bindings are made with knit. This was a yellow cotton interlock. 

The skirt and sleeves are made with cotton woven. For these I dipped into my beloved, and much hoarded, Dear Stella fabric. This print is from the Piper line. I picked these prints up from Once Upon A Yard. I have been buying from Melissa of Once Upon A Yard for years and she is super awesome!

The dress comes with long or short sleeve options. I made this one back when the weather here was beautiful.
 I am now going to take a moment to soak up that green, green, grass; and the warm yellow sun rays in these pictures....Aaaaahhh! Okay moment done. Now back to the snow and ice covered scenery here in southern Oregon right now. Not that it isn't beautiful, in fact the snow sparkles and glimmers, but its COLD!

The knit bodice on The Playhouse Dress really allows for a comfy, easy fit. The woven skirt and sleeves allows you to showcase some of your beautiful prints. With a dress like this Keilana just wants to dance, dance, dance!
<3 Love it! <3

As always, Bonnie's designs are easy to sew and come with wonderful directions. The Playhouse Dress pattern is fantastic. Check out the pattern listing *here* to see the long sleeve version (more suitable for this cold time a year :)

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

The Nessie Top from CINO

I recently had the awesome opportunity to test the Nessie top pattern from Craftiness Is Not Optional. I think it pretty much goes without saying that the pattern is simply wonderful!

I am a long time follower of Craftiness Is Not Optional and I just LOVE all of Jess's designs! (I think my heart may have skipped a beat when I signed up to test!) Naturally, the Nessie top became an instant favorite.

 And...what should a girl pair with a red shirt with lace color blocking? Why, leopard print jeggings, of course!

The Nessie top has a hi-lo hem and comes with three different sleeve lengths - short, 3/4, and long. It also has color-blocking and peter pan collar options. For this red shirt I used stretch lace with the color block option and backed it with a creamy white jersey. The lace backing doesn't show through much but was done mostly for comfort.

Can I share a dirty little secret?...I have been a bit slow to catch on to the hi-lo hem craze. I might just be a new hi-lo fan club member though. On the Nessie top it totally works and I love it! The two main reasons why it sold me is 1) the hi-lo hem gently tapers, and 2) a girl can play, ^^^or climb all over a rock^^^, without worries of skin peeping out. Not that I have anything against plumbers ;)

For my second Nessie top I used a jersey weight cotton thermal knit in this pretty flower doodle print. I chose a 3/4 sleeve option to mix things up a bit. I may just love this one more than the first. They are just fun and quick to make!

 Since I am sharing secrets today I will admit that I made a size 5 when I should have made a size 6. Oh, yeah; I forget how fast she is growing! I have also been fighting some icky bug germs going around for a while now and my brain just isn't functioning at full capacity for the moment. Ugh. 

Actually, I think it worked out pretty well though. Winter weather is already hitting here in southern Oregon, so these shirts will likely be used as a base layer rather than stand alone tees. They are pretty awesome either way!

 Yep, completely awesome!
Okay, enough tooting about the Nessie top...just go buy it already!

Thank you so much for letting me test, Jess!

^^^Scenes from our end of photo shoot backyard chase^^^